I see you leave in 49 days, how exciting is that?!? Seems like a great time to go. I'm originally from Springfield, and went to BU.
I did do some searching on the net and have learned quite a bit since my post. I'm beginning to learn that not everything that is a "must do" is really a "must do". This bike ride leaves at around 3:00 in the morning. You get to the top of the volcanoe and it is still dark and cold. The view of the sun coming up over the clouds is one of the best, but then the ride down isn't all it's built up to be. From what I read you really just ride the brakes down the mountain. It is a single file ride with a van behind and a guide in front. All the stops are the same spots the cars make down. From other visitor's reviews it is a bit dangerous with cars also making the same ride.
I'm going to continue sleeping at 3:00 am., miss the spectacular sunrise and rent a car, and drive down it.
Thanks Jimbo, have a great trip!